Thursday, May 04, 2006

Beyond the "garrison state"

I've only been to D.C. a couple of times since September 11. Both times it just about broke my heart to see the Capitol building, the Supreme Court, the Washington Monument, all the landmarks of the free and the brave walled off by Jersey bumpers. Eisenhower hoped that "security and liberty [might] prosper." Who could have predicted that a Republican military general who became president would end up such a prophet on our civil liberties?

Washington monument

A new federal courthouse in Oregon shows that it doesn't have to be this way. "'We need public spaces for a new era, and they cannot be fortresses,' says federal judge Michael Hogan, whose new home, the Wayne Lyman Morse United States Courthouse in Eugene, Oregon, is not a fortress. It is an open, glassy, brilliantly lit reimagination of the public square for a new century . . . .'"

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